Letter to Mountain View City Council on History Museum at Cuesta Annex

(CGF sent the letter below to Mountain View City Council.  -Brian)

October 18, 2011

Mountain View City Council

            Re:  Please preserve the living history of Cuesta Annex by locating the History Museum at a different site

Dear Mayor Siegel and City Councilmembers;

The Committee for Green Foothills and Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society do not oppose the proposed Mountain View History Museum, but its location should not be on and should not obliterate a significant portion of Cuesta Annex, for both historical and open space reasons.  As organizations dedicated to protecting undeveloped open space – natural habitats and agriculture –  we are acutely aware of the loss of both kinds of habitats here in the Valley of Heart’s Delight, replaced nearly entirely with developed buildings and to some extent with developed turf parklands

As both remnants of a historical orchard that could be restored and natural open space that often interspersed with Mountain View farmlands of just two generations ago, Cuesta annex’s undeveloped, turf-free, natural flat land open space that is inland and not along the Bay is truly execptional.  The City currently has the option of bringing back some of the historical orchards that were present at the site, and it can augment and support the natural habitat that is present.  It can even choose to continue allowing in this one place in Mountain View the most ancient of historical practices – tens of thousands of years of children being allowed to wander around at will and dig in the dirt.

Please put the History Museum somewhere else.  Even right next to Cuesta Annex in Cuesta Park is a far better location, with far more acres of turf than natural open space, or elsewhere here in Mountain View than has many turf parks and only one uniquely free area for children to roam in the dirt and the bugs and the birds.  And while the museum should not be located at Cuesta Annex, if it is located there then it should occupy a minimized footprint and public monies should not be used to subsidize or accelerate this proposal to take away part the public’s annex.

Please contact us if you have any questions.


Brian A. Schmidt, Committee for Green Foothills

Legislative Advocate, Santa Clara County

Shani Kleinhaus, Santa Clara Valley Audubon Society

Environmental Advocate

UPDATE:  Our letter was published in Mountain View Patch.

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